FSU sees renewed interest from rookies after North Carolina win


There is a long list of factors that go into the decision-making process of college football’s top prospects.Location. Education. Atmosphere. Playtime. Coaching stability. Offensive and defensive patterns. Installations and so on.

Many of these are negotiable, but what is not is the belief in a program. Prospects should be confident that a college football program will give them every chance to reach their potential and that they will be successful in their career.

Florida State’s 31-28 victory last Saturday over No.5 North Carolina may have been the first tangible proof to rookies that Florida State can be this type of program under coach. -Chief Mike Norvell. And the Seminoles are already seeing the fruits of this work.

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While he couldn’t speak to specific rookies, FSU recruiting coordinator David Johnson said he had already seen a spike in interest in the Seminoles in just 72 hours since that game.“I think it’s major. That’s the momentum you’re looking for, ”Johnson said. “This is one of your main recruiting points – you have to win to have big kids. They are looking to enter a winning program. So we let them know that we are going in the right direction. They want to see victories.

“It was really huge for us to face a quality opponent like North Carolina, and now the rookies are calling and texting. And they were excited about it. ”

Having the game airing on ABC in prime time certainly helped.

“For showing it on national television, everyone gets to see you play,” Johnson said. ” This is what you want. ”

It wasn’t just the fact that the Seminoles won the game that likely captured the imaginations of the rookies, it’s what they looked like.

Mike Coe, head coach of neighboring Madison County High, who has won several state championships and many alumni have continued to play at Florida State, said he and other prep coaches were in awe of the look. much more organized Seminoles during this season’s matches. . He said it went a long way in letting recruits know the program was going in the right direction.

Coe said the North Carolina game was just the latest in a series of positive signs for the Seminoles.

“Their response to losing Miami is what sets me apart,” said Coe, who coached current FSU defensive back Travis Jay in high school. “Even in a loss to Notre Dame, when they finished with a defensive position, it said a lot to me. Then they went out [against North Carolina] and looked even better. All three phases are improving. ”

Orlando Edgewater coach Cameron Duke said the improvement he had seen in Florida State’s offensive and defensive lines was telling. He said this kind of growth in such a short period is indicative of future success.

“The development of the players and the way they control the trenches is obvious because it all starts there,” said Duke. “But you also see a different effort with these kids who put it out there. Jordan Travis was also remarkable in the course of this attack. Then getting two massive punt blocks was so big on special teams.

“Then in defense I have seen a big change since the start of the year. This week they were winning the battles up front. And you just see a different energy. You can see it in the eyes of the players and the coach. Norvell in the way they believe in challenge and this staff. ”

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Leading up to Saturday’s game, Norvell and his team faced a long series of recruiting challenges. They only had a few weeks in the spring to bring in recruits before the coronavirus pandemic hit, and they also lost the opportunity to get out on the road and monitor the outlook during the assessment period of the spring.

While these issues affect all programs, they are particularly problematic for first-year coaching staff. And that’s probably a key factor as to why the Seminoles currently rank 29th in the Rivals recruiting rankings with 16 engagements and an average rating of 3.19.

But Coe and Duke said the rookies would be in awe of what they saw on Saturday, especially if it continues into this season.

“It was a great win for FSU and fun to watch,” said Duke. “Coach Norvell has done a great job changing the culture, and he’s also so humble to take the blame when things don’t go well – and the kids are taking notice. And you can see it with the effort these kids put in. field. ”

Says Coe, “It was great to see joy on the faces of these children. They’ve been through so much, and you can see the impact Coach Norvell and the staff have on them. [Cory] Durden remained engaged after the targeting. [Tamorrion] Terry was engaged and cheering on his teammates the whole game. So impressed with [James] Blackman’s attitude. You must learn to crawl before you walk, and [Saturday] night they took a huge step. I think any kid who watches this would want to be a part of it and for the future at FSU.

“Really happy for Coach Norvell and the staff. The scary thing is that he succeeds without a normal spring, summer, and normal season. It will only get better in my opinion. ”


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